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Thread: Quality of The New School for Social Research graduate program

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    Quality of The New School for Social Research graduate program

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    Title. Does anyone have experience with their economics department, or know graduate students? I was accepted there for the M.S. degree (decent scholarship), and I would like to hear what impressions anyone has about the quality of education.

    I picked The New School to apply to in the first place because it seemed like a decently ranked heterodox school that would teach a solid foundation in micro and metrics theory + interesting non-mainstream theory as well.

    Any info you might have on the school will be appreciated. Thanks.

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    100 views and no response, that's over what would have been the average view/response ratio. This is the largest community of people interested in graduate econ I know of on the web and no one has experience with this school? Could be a bad signal about the reputation of the program, I suppose.

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    It's not that. I think most people would not have an idea of New School simply because it is out of the mainstream. That being said, according to a friend that is applying there this fall, there, you will have the opportunity to study pretty much what you want. Although it is theoretically heterodox, you have the option of studying regular stuff too. And usually people get placed into good (but increasingly few) heterodox departments of the US. Plus the core courses are essentially the same as those in mainstream econ PhD program. In addition, as long as you like big cities, you will love the urban campus in NYC. Housing is expensive though, obviously.
    Southern road trip!

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    It is probably the second best left heterodox program in the country after UMass Amherst, but they are definitely outside the overall top 60 programs by anyone's measure. They have a rep for poor funding, though that does not seem to be the issue in your case. The grad student to faculty ratio is pretty bad (I think about 15:1 if you include both masters and PhD students) and their placement record is not good compared to mainstream programs of similar rank. The student to faculty ratio combined with poor funding also means that they have a much longer than average time to completion of PhD than similarly ranked schools (about 7-8 years compared to the more typical 5-6). The better more well known faculty are also somewhat older and their one high caliber mainstream economist (Salih Neftci) passed away a couple of years ago.

    If your goal in your MS is to move on to a PhD at a mainstream program, you should definitely not go. If you want to continue on with your PhD there or at UMass Amherst it is not a bad choice but by going to a heterodox PhD program you heavily limit your placement opportunities. If you want to go to industry after the MS you are better off going to a mainstream program, even without funding unless you specifically want to work for a left heterodox friendly think tank.

    My general opinion is that you are always better off going to a mainstream program even if you are interested in heterodox theory because going to a mainstream program gives you more options and better placements. Then you can study the heterodox theory on your own at a later date. Many of the larger mainstream schools have a token heterodox faculty member who could provide you with the materials for self study of heterodox theory.

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    Just remember that your career opportunities will be extremely limited. Most prominent "heterodox" economists start off as mainstream economists (e.g. McCloskey); it's very hard to gain recognition otherwise. Personally I don't have much against heterodox economics, but much of the academia thinks otherwise.

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    Thank you for your responses so far. So in general, people pursuing an academic career will have a harder time finding placement on the whole after getting a heterodox degree.
    In my case, I plan to enter either the private or government industry sectors. This will hopefully occur right after, or during my master's program.

    I figure industry employers, particularly private sector, won't give a hoot where you earn your advanced economics degree, so long as the place is top 80 PhD program and you maintain grades approaching a 4.0. Is this the case?

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